Interested individuals and research participants wanted: Overcoming loneliness together and promoting “planetary health”

Interested individuals and research participants wanted: Overcoming loneliness together and promoting “planetary health” header image
Symbol picture loneliness (source: Pexels/Jeswin Thomas)

Constructor University in Bremen is focusing on climate change during the “Overcoming Loneliness Together” action week taking place June 17-23, 2024. The aim is to better understand what people need when taking care of their own health and connectedness while also protecting the planet.

Loneliness is affecting more and more people in our society. Where one's own expectations and reality differ, a lack of fulfilling contacts is perceived. These feelings can affect anyone - just like the increasing concerns about climate change. There could be a connection between the two issues, according to Dr. Sonia Lippke, professor of health psychology and behavioral medicine and head of a research project on planetary health at Constructor University. “People who feel lonely are often more impacted by the effects of climate change,” Lippke explains. “Preliminary research so far shows that those who feel heard and understood also perceive themselves with higher self-efficacy and can therefore make a positive contribution - even if it is only small steps.”

A new research project starts right here and is dedicated to the task of better understanding the interactions between loneliness and the perception of climate change. This is not just about environmental and climate protection, but also about promoting the health of each individual. In a time of demographic change, the health of the population plays a central role in protecting our planet. The research is aimed at this and should develop innovative solutions.

Dr. Annette Schomburg, who heads a laboratory study on planetary health at Constructor University, explains: “Optimism and the feeling that you can make a difference are crucial. Those who are highly stressed have a harder time adapting and responding effectively. Our research shows that a sense of community and belonging is not only important for individual health, but also for our climate and the environment."

Dr. Lippke, who is currently working on a book about loneliness, emphasizes: “A society that sticks together and in which people care about each other is not only better able to distribute the climate burden fairly, but also ensures that fewer people have to feel lonely.”

The research team is inviting interested individuals to take part in an online survey with the aim of better understanding what information and support is needed to promote individual health behavior and planetary health. Participants will have the opportunity to reflect on their own areas of life and contribute to a more sustainable future. Participation in the survey takes 10 to 15 minutes. It is confidential and free of charge; all that is required is Internet access. Participation is possible in German, English and Spanish.

Click here for the survey

Questions answered by
Dr. Sonia Lippke | Professor of health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine | Tel.: +49 421 200-4730

Media Contacts
Daisy Juknischke-Heinsen
Corporate Communications
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